HR considered worst department at data analysis

Companies’
HR departments are more likely to have inadequate procedures for handling data
than any other areas of the business, according to research.

A
survey of 100 medium and large organisations reveals that almost a half
identify their HR function as likely to be the most backward department in
terms of data analysis.

The
study shows that a quarter of respondents highlight finance as the next most
likely area to have inadequate data analysis and that IT departments are most
likely to manage data effectively.

Graham
Walter, managing director of Cognos, which carried out the research, said,
"It is alarming to see that the HR department suffers the worst reputation
when it comes to data handling. It is responsible for professional development
of the company’s staff. If poor decisions are being made because the department
isn’t making the most of the data analysis tools available, it will impact on
the entire enterprise for both now and in the future."

The
survey finds that eight out of 10 UK companies admit they are making
business-critical decisions without access to all the information they need.

The
study also reveals that 84 per cent of organisations rate improving their
efficiency of managing vital data as their top priority for 2002.

Seven
out of 10 respondents think that implementing a central database and
information analysis solution would be of most benefit to their organisation,
compared to only 9 per who cite data security.

Walter
added, "Companies hold a great deal of potentially valuable data at every
level, but it’s absolutely worthless if you can’t analyse or interpret it
efficiently.

"Companies
which appreciate that being mediocre isn’t good enough and act promptly will
survive the current market conditions."

By Ben Willmott

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